Reservations 877·97·CRAFT  (877·972·7238)

Akaroa (Christchurch), New Zealand


Christchurch is a colorful city in transition, coping resiliently and creatively with the aftermath of New Zealand's second-biggest natural disaster. Traditionally the most English of New Zealand's cities, Christchurch is now adding a modern and innovative layer to its damaged heritage heart. It boasts a thriving arts community and is internationally recognized for its award-winning gardens. All of the city's major attractions are within easy walking distance from Cathedral Square, a large pedestrian plaza that forms the city's center.

Ship Location

Ships now tender into Akaroa, a 1.5-hour drive from Christchurch. In Akaroa, i-SITE facilities can be found at the end of the Akaroa Wharf.

Getting Around

Most ships offer shuttle services to the center of Christchurch. Once you are in Christchurch it's an easy city to navigate on foot. Most attractions are an easy walk. The Arts Centre's unique maze of buildings and shops have multiple steps and narrow passageways, making it difficult for those with wheelchairs and scooters. A historic tram runs a 1.6-mile loop throughout the City Centre, providing a fun way to get around. There are also various taxis, most accepting credit cards.


Cathedral Square, dominated by the neo-Gothic Christchurch Cathedral, is a great place to experience the city's culture. With a huge, 18-meter-tall metal sculpture, the Chalice, which commemorates the millennium. A number of cafes and bars surround the square. The Cathedral itself was consecrated in 1881 and boasts an impressive stained-glass rose window, as well as a wooden-ribbed ceiling. In an effort to give new life to businesses affected by the 2011 earthquake, the Re:START Mall is housing boutiques, restaurants and other attractions of interest to visitors. The mall is constructed out of beautifully renovated shipping containers. Opened in late October 2011, this colourful labyrinth of shops was the first retail activity in the Christchurch CBD after the February 2011 earthquake. Be sure to visit Hapa for a good selection of design and crafts from local artists. Don't forget one of the largest city parks in the world. The Christchurch Botanic Gardens renowned for its 19th-century trees. The gardens boast more than 10,000 specimens of indigenous and imported plants.